General Future of sim cards

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by Markyboy81, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. Markyboy81 macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 30, 2011
    #1
    I think that the concept of the sim card is out of date nowadays and I would advocate getting rid of them completely.
    Up until a year or so ago, this wasn't so important, but now we have so many devices - tablets, cameras, even smartwatches that can be used with a sim card, I think now's the time to get rid of them completely.
    I have a few devices now that take sim cards and the process of changing sim cards between devices, or even buying separate sim cards to use in each device separately, seems very old fashioned and inconvenient.
    What I would suggest is some kind of system that would do away with the need for sims altogether.
    Perhaps an app that could be installed on the device, where the user can input the simcard number in order to get access to the network. Of course this would need to be secure, but there could be prompts for the user to have to answer a security question, or even to make a call to the network operator to register the device.
    Depending on your contract or plan, the network could allow 2,3 or maybe 4 devices per 'sim'.
    The app could allow you to control which device can send/receive phone calls or SMS, with data access being possible on all devices, with data usage being combined.
    What do you think of this idea? I'm sure it's possible to happen but I doubt that it will. Perhaps there's some flaw that I haven't thought of?
     
  2. Nermal Moderator

    Nermal

    Staff Member

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    #2
    My operator (Telecom) here in NZ used a similar system in the past (and I believe that Verizon and Sprint still do in the US), where if you got a new device you needed to log into Telecom's site, enter your account number and the ESN of the new phone, and then you had to go into the programming menu on the new phone and enter the ... MIN, I think it was called.

    Since 2009, new Telecom phones in NZ have used SIMs instead and most people find changing a SIM to be much more convenient than entering numbers into the phone.

    In the case of multiple devices, you could be onto something there, but there's nothing inherent to SIM technology that prevents one plan from being shared; one of the local operators lets you attach multiple phones to a single account for $1/month each.
     
  3. adder7712 macrumors 68000

    adder7712

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    #3
    I believe Telecom was once a cdmaOne operator hence the ESN.
     
  4. mattopotamus macrumors G4

    mattopotamus

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    #4
    Sim cars definitely make buying and selling phones easy. We just need a universal standard with size. Everyone should use the nano sim...it is the smallest :)
     
  5. Markyboy81 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    But surely not having a sim card would make it even easier?
    I mean it'd just be a case of factory resetting the phone before selling it.
    Networks could still lock their phones if they wanted (not that I think they should).
    I can see the argument about networks not wanting customers to share plans, but they could still restrict customers to using one device at any one time.
     
  6. watchthisspace macrumors 6502a

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    #6
  7. mattopotamus macrumors G4

    mattopotamus

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    #7
    A lot of people want to know the phone is right for their network when they buy it second hand. You can just pop your sim card in and test it right on the spot.
     
  8. otismotive77 macrumors 6502

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    May 18, 2013
    #8
    every carrier should have it's own cloud service where all the data is saved(the data we save in our sim cards), every customer should be given his/her own account in the cloud service where all of his data would go. every account should have it's own username, ID and passwords(fingerprints would also be a great thing) so that none would have any trouble with his'her data. that's how we'd get more memory for out msgs and contacts, and changing devices would become really easy. just log into your (sim)cloud account from the new device and voila!
     
  9. Markyboy81 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    Exactly! This would make changing providers so much easier too. No more waiting for a new sim to arrive, losing contacts etc. Plus it'd be easier to switch between devices and not have to physically move the sim. And the issue of converting the sim to micro/nano and running the risk of losing or getting the card stuck wouldn't be a problem. What's more, it's not something that needs to be phased into new phones, it could happen right now with perhaps a small firmware upgrade.
     
  10. nenotobe macrumors newbie

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    Aug 27, 2013
    #10
    agree.they could still restrict customers to using one device at any one time. thanks[​IMG]
     
  11. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #11
    It would make it easier for carriers to keep you from taking the phone that you bought and using it where you want. I know of very few CDMA carriers who will activate a phone from another CDMA carrier even though it is technically possible. CDMA doesn't use sim cards and basically uses the system that you describe.
     
  12. JackieInCo macrumors 601

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    Colorado
    #12
    This is why I don't mind sim cards at all. I can take my iPhones and use them with T-Mobile and AT&T, same with my iPad, Nexus 7 and Nexus 4. I swap sims between them all the time.
     
  13. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 603

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    Oct 27, 2009
    #13
    Would be nice if we can use more than one phone with the same account/number. No swapping SIM cards (according to OP). Probably have an option to select default phone which will always overide the other when it comes to making/receiving calls, text and data.
     
  14. Markyboy81 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    Yes, I don't see why it would be an issue for operators, as long as you stick within the data limits etc.
     
  15. watchthisspace macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    The cloud service still doesn't address a convenience issue. When you buy a new phone, you take your sim card out of the old one, pop in the new and off you go. Sounds easier than logging into a cloud service and then activating your phone or something.

    Also, with no Sim in the phone, how will it know which network to try connect to?

    And what happens if you're overseas, with no internet access and you want to use your phone on a local network instead of paying roaming charges? In my country, it's popular for foreigners to get their sim cards for a supermarket than go into a store.
     
  16. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 603

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    #16
    Sim cards do nothing but store the necessary network info for each subscriber. Don't see why they can't set it up to be flashed onto a phone without a SIM card. Also don't see why it wouldn't be possible to toggle between carriers(domestic and foreign) with any unlocked phone.
     
  17. watchthisspace macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    Flashed via NFC? Could work. As long as the phone can support multiple carriers via a settings switch. That's a possibility.
     
  18. LIVEFRMNYC macrumors 603

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    #18
    I was thinking of like a partition on the Phone's storage that acts like a virtual SIM card(s). Whether flashed USB or Wireless.
     
  19. JeffiJers macrumors 6502a

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  20. adder7712 macrumors 68000

    adder7712

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    #20
    They're here to stay. SIM cards are an innate feature of GSM-derived networks.
     
  21. otismotive77 macrumors 6502

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    May 18, 2013
    #21
    let's hope a millionaire reads this and our wishes come true;)
     

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